To meet his sales numbers, a young 3PL salesman calls 100 prospects per day and asks for the sale. He has been taught that if he makes enough calls, he will win over a shipper or two. The wise old boss reminds his newbie salesman that “it’s a numbers game.”
After a long week of pestering shippers, the young salesman turns his attention to the ladies. He is determined to improve his sex life. He makes the goal of having sex twice per week. So applying what he learned at the office, the young man determines that finding willing women is also a numbers game.
The Numbers Game Strategy
So the young man decides he will ask 100 women per day to hook up. Most likely, the young man will be met with long days of rejection and he may even have to fend off a few punches or kicks. Most women do not appreciate his approach. Of course, If he asks enough women, he just might find one who is interested, but most likely this strategy will fail. Not an efficient or safe approach.
The strategy is a fail because most women would prefer to have a relationship before things get intimate. A relationship will give her time to assess whether this is her kind of guy. After all, not every gal likes logistics guys.
The Same Logic Applies to Sales
Whether you are looking for sex or for a sale, it all starts with a relationship. For the amorous salesman, he should try to build a relationship with a woman he is attracted to. If that relationship works out, somewhere down the line, sex will naturally happen.
Sales follows a similar logic. A 3PL salesman could make 100 phone calls per day asking for the sale, but if he doesn’t have a relationship with the buyer, he will usually be met with rejection, but hopefully no violence.
The sale is sex and marketing is the relationship.
Marketing is Relationship Building
Build a relationship with your market the same way you would build a relationship with a person you like.
- Based on what your company sells, determine your ideal customer. Spend time learning about their business. Understand their biggest problems, read what they read, attend the conferences they attend.
- Generously share your expertise and try to gain favorable attention with your ideal customers. You can’t be everything to everyone. Build a niche and focus your energies and relationship building on your perfect match.
- Develop and nurture the relationship until… 🙂
Agree? Disagree? I appreciate your feedback.
Sex and The Salesman, Part 2 – The Art of Seduction (great follow up article by my friend and sometime collaborator, Vanessa Glavac)